8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

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Route & dates

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

New York City
bus + Fly:  8​h 45​min
San Jose
— 1 night
Fly + taxi:  2​h
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive + Fly + bus:  11​h
New York City

few
hours
San Jose

San Jose
A trip to San Jose, the capital, commercial center, and cultural hub of Costa Rica, gives you a chance to experience the lively atmosphere and rich cultural past of this vibrant country.
To find photos, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the San Jose trip planner .

New York City, USA to San Jose is an approximately 9-hour combination of bus and flight. You can also drive. Traveling from New York City to San Jose, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. In December, San Jose is much hotter than New York City - with highs of 78°F and lows of 66°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Tue) so you can travel to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Shopping

Side Trip

Riish and Toosh Afro Costa Rican Paintings
Accommodations
Get expert advice on where to stay in San Jose.
Find places to stay »

4
days
La Fortuna de San Carlos

La Fortuna de San Carlos ©
The small city of La Fortuna de San Carlos is best known for the nearby Arenal volcano that looms in the background and dominates the vista.
Step out of the city life by going to Paradise Hot Springs and Tabacon Hot Springs. Step off the beaten path and head to Arenal Natura Ecological Park and Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano). When in La Fortuna de San Carlos, make a side trip to see Butterfly Conservatory in El Castillo, approximately 42 minutes away. Spend the 28th (Thu) exploring nature at Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal. It doesn't end there: relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour.

To find photos, reviews, and other tourist information, use the La Fortuna de San Carlos tour site .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or drive. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Spas

Side Trips

Butterfly Conservatory, Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano)
Accommodations
Get expert advice on where to stay in La Fortuna de San Carlos.
Find places to stay »
Highlights from your plan
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
River Rafting & Tubing
Arenal Natura Ecological Park ©
Arenal Natura Ecological Park

2
days
Monteverde

Monteverde ©
If you're a nature lover, consider a vacation in Monteverde, an eco-tourism heaven nestled between two primary cloud forests in the Costa Rican Central Highlands.
Kick off your visit on the 30th (Sat): identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve. Here are some ideas for day two: look for gifts at Souvenir Rosewood, then identify plant and animal life at Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena, and then stroll through The Bat Jungle.

To see reviews, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, you can read our Monteverde day trip planner.

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde in 2 hours. You'll have a few hours on the 1st (Mon) to wrap things up before traveling home.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Zoos & Aquariums
Accommodations
Get expert advice on where to stay in Monteverde.
Find places to stay »
Highlights from your plan
Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena ©
Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena
The Bat Jungle ©
The Bat Jungle

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